There is not a lot of words that I have for my time in Burkina Faso. Only that I became very aware of God’s Kingdom during my time with God’s people. That not a heart goes unseen by Him and that His love is always enough. I am so thankful for every human I came into contact with. For every hug + handshake, for every laugh and every tear. I am so thankful and so excited to go back soon!
This month has been wild busy & I wouldn’t have it ANY other way. Kicked off the year by shooting my FIRST international wedding, announced my FIRST ever workshop, booked my GOAL amount of weddings for 2018 and in celebration, bought a new camera!! (The FujiFilm X100F for those of you asking!!) It’s been BUSY but so GOOD. My first international wedding was in Tulum, Mexico & it was not what I was expecting at all!
Photographing an international wedding has been one of my goals for almost four years & this January, it finally happened!! With having a goal like this for so long, I really built it up in my head. I thought that it was going to be care/stress free and simply magical the whole time, haha – it was not. All of the Travel Photographers I follow, do a really good job of making it seem like traveling for weddings is the most magical time EVER. & don’t get me wrong, it was AMAZING & I would LOVE to do more international weddings but it does put a whole extra added level of stress and worry that you don’t typically have in a regular wedding. I am SO thankful for Kelsey & Lance for trusting me to document their week in Mexico & I have no doubt in my mind that the next time I GET to travel for another wedding, I will be better prepared mentally for what it is going to look like & what I will need of myself to be the best photographer I possibly can be for my couples. We started the week off with an engagement session in Tulum, Mexico! Dancing in the streets, loving on each other well and finding time to be intentional with speaking kindness over each other was the the perfect way to take a break from all the wedding week stress!
The wedding day itself was fully magical. It was FILLED with so many overwhelming thankful tears, a lot of lingering hugs and sweet kisses. I am SO thankful that I get to travel for weddings. That this dream of mine has become a reality and that I get to document something more lasting than a wedding day – I get to document love, passion and emotion. I am overwhelmed with thankfulness.
I am SO honored to travel throughout Canada for your beautiful, intimate, weddings. I am SO thankful that you beautiful humans TRUST me enough to come and document one of the most important days of your life. It still blows my mind every single time I get a lengthy email about why you want me to be there for your wedding day and what the day is going to look like. It blows my mind how you guys will plan your wedding day AROUND my schedule. It truly is THE biggest honour. & I am so very thankful. This wedding, was one for the books. From the first phone call talking about a SURPRISE WEDDING, to the final boat ride the morning after the wedding – everything about it was truly perfect.
I got a phone call from Jenna, (sister of the Groom) about two weeks before their family vacation in BC. Her, the groom & bride had a brilliant plan to surprise elope while on their family vacation, surprising everyone in the family and getting married right on their Yacht! I, a deep lover of surprises said, HECK YES, I AM IN. Planning a surprise wedding comes with a large amount of good, white lies. We told the family that I had a wedding on the island on Saturday, (not true, I had a wedding in Jasper, Alberta) so I could come to them on Sunday and take their “family photos”. It was the perfect plan. The Mother of the Groom, even messaged me and told me how excited she was that I was available for their family photos! Everything about it, was perfect.
The night before their wedding, Bobby & Mackenzie stood up at dinner to say a “simple” toast to the family. They talked about how grateful they were to have family like they do, and how it was not just family, but friends. Bobby thanked them for welcoming Mackenzie into the family at the start of their relationship. He talked about their engagement, that happened two years ago and how his family never thought that they would see the day when they would finally tie the knot… and with that, he said, “BUT TOMORROW, WE ARE GETTING MARRIED ON PENDER ISLAND.” All you could hear was his sister Jessica exclaiming, “WHAT?!” and burst of laughter and excitement all over the yacht. Everyone was in complete shock. It was the perfect surprise.
When you explain to people that you took a private plane to get married on an island and then went to the yacht for the reception, it all sounds a little snobby or high class or whatever. But let me be the first to tell you, that is NOT what this experience was AT ALL. These people are so kind, so generous, so loving and so close that it was just the most calm, relaxed, chill, intimate wedding that I have ever been to. Throughout the whole day, there was just this overwhelming sense of unity and love throughout the family. It was personal, it was intimate, it was so down to earth that it brought me to tears, it brought me to cry from laughing so hard, it made me feel so loved and important that I got to be the one to document this intimate, sacred love.
Bobby & Mackenzie (and family), thank you. From the deepest parts of my heart, thank you. Thank you for bringing me alongside of you on this amazing surprise wedding. Thank you for trusting me to document your day. Thank you for being kind and generous. Thank you for making sure that I was looked after on YOUR wedding day. Thank you for going out of your way to say kind things to me. Thank you for letting me eat and drink with you. Thank you for welcoming me in. I am so very thankful & will never stop speaking so highly of you all.
We started the day in Victoria, and took the Yacht to Pender Island.
When we got to the island, Bobby (the groom) & I did some location scouting to find the perfect spot to get married later that day! & we found it. Look how perfect this little spot is!
One dream that Bobby & Mackenzie had for their wedding day was to get a photo in a little row boat. Well, right when we got back to the Yacht after portraits, the cutest women was rowing by & was SO generous and let us use her boat for a few shots! I love the kindness of strangers.
Sidenote: go listen to Mikes music right now!! You can find him on Apple Music at Mike Edel.